Private Walter Brown was a stretcher bearer during the Battle of the Somme and was fatally injured while trying to help the wounded during an attack on Delville Wood. He had joined the Royal Army Medical Corps along with his friend Henry Bagshaw from Greetham. The two had consecutive army numbers but were not serving togther when they died. Walter John Brown was the son of Walter and Sarah Jane Brown and was born in Greetham on 27 December 1890. He and Henry enlisted in Oakham and joined the RAMC on 18 January 1915. Walter went out to France in January 1916 with 102nd Field Ambulance and was wounded in several places with three other stretcher bearers on 19 July 1916 as the British made another attempt to capture Delville Wood. He was treated at a casualty clearing station but died the next day. His commanding officer wrote: "He showed great pluck and courage and was quite cheerful. He was a fine, courageous soldier, held in high respect and admiration by all. It may be some little consolation to feel that he died a hero's death in the noble effort to save life and assist his comrades-in arms and bring help to the wounded." Walter is buried in France at Heilly Station Cemetery, grave II.D.60, and is remembered on Greetham's war memorial.
See where all our Rutland soldiers died during the Battle of the Somme on our interactive map.
We are grateful to Greetham and the Great War for extra details about Walter. The photographs below are courtesy of Walter's descendant Sharon Kirk. He is seen seated with a fellow soldier - perhaps his friend Henry Bagshaw? Other pictures show his service cutlery and the embroidered postcards he sent from the front.
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